Either you're wondering what on earth I'm talking about or you're thinking 'What's the difference?'
For those asking the first question, these are two traditionally used homeopathic remedies generally used for the symptoms of sprains and strain type injuries. They help support the body to deal with these uncomfortable injuries. Like most homeopathic remedies their reach is larger than a single symptom but we can stick to the basics. What we're looking for is damage to soft tissue with tenderness, pain, swelling...sounds like arnica too? Yep. I'd use Arnica at the time of the injury but after a day or two as the swelling subsides you may see some clear patterns that will help you decide on the next remedy.
Rhus Toxicodendron is made from Poison Ivy. Itchy? Forget the rash for now, we're concentrating on the sprain and strain aspect of the remedy! This remedy is also about the joints, tendons and connective tissue. The pains will ALWAYS be better for gentle movement. For example you've twisted your ankle and it was throbbing overnight. The pain is more tearing than bruised. In the morning, you get up and that ankle is painful and stiff as you hobble to the loo then to the kitchen for a cuppa. After pottering around for a bit you find that the ankle has loosened up a bit and the pain eased. But the next morning it is rinse and repeat...RHUS TOX is your friend. It can also be used in the management of arthritis and sciatica that presents like this too. For Rhus Tox conditions the cold will make things feel worse as will rest. If you are better for movement and warmth Rhus Tox is the remedy you seek!
Ruta Gaveolens is from the well known herb of grace, Rue. We're looking more at injuries to tendons, cartilage, joints and periosteum (this is most likely to happen in places like the shins, outside of the eye socket or the cheek bone). You'll find the pain is more of a bruised feeling.
The big thing to remember is Ruta is ALWAYS better for rest. Not necessarily lying down but just not moving the injured part so much. The movement will aggravate the injury rather than make it feel better.
Achilles tendon injuries, shin splints, growing pains in shins...all are Ruta type ailments .
To use the ankle injury above, if you needed Ruta the pain would be worse for walking around. The pain would be a bruised feeling rather than tearing. Unfortunately Ruta is also worse for cold and better for warmth so that's not going to help you differentiate!
As I mentioned Rue is the herb of grace. Ruta will often follow in a 'fall from grace' whether that's falling off your high heels or tumbling after you just scored a goal...if there was a moment of pride followed by a fall it could be RUTA.
So that 's the highly simplified version of when to use Rhus Tox and when to use Ruta. They follow Arnica very nicely after an injury. Give it a go! Let me know how you went.
May your day be filled with laughter!
Disclaimer: Homeopathy is a traditional medicine.The TGA considers Homeopathy a low risk medicine. It may be used in conjunction with other medicines. For any ongoing chronic condition, it is important to be assessed or examined by your healthcare professional or specialist. Information given here is in no way intended to take the place of advice from your chosen healthcare professional or specialist. Any examples given from the authors life do not indicate that the remedy in question will work for everyone in every instance. They are used solely to illustrate the use the medicine in a practical situation.
Always seek medical advice in emergencies.